What’s Your Song? Part II

Do you ever feel like you’re in the grip, with people telling you what to do and how you should be? I felt that way a lot growing up. Still do sometimes.

What I love about writing is that you can communicate your feelings and thoughts. What are you thinking about? How are you feeling? What makes you mad, sad, happy, or afraid? What do you wish for? Write about it in a song.

Don’t know where to start? Listen to your favorite songs. Write out the lyrics. If you can’t make out all the words, search for them online. When you have the words in front of you, study them. What do you notice? Is there rhyming? What’s the pattern? Notice what is the same and what is different in the songs you like.

Song lyrics are made up of verses and a chorus, the part that gets repeated during the song. Many songs have a bridge, a part that is different than the verses and chorus. It provides more variety to your song. But let’s not concern ourselves with bridges at this point. Let’s keep it simple.

Do you play music? If so, you can start by developing a melody you like and then adding the words to it. Or, you can begin with the lyrics. Select your topic and stick to it as you write. One way to write lyrics is to start with a title. Ask yourself what you want to say about the title. Then, say it in your verses and chorus. Try to create a rhythm in your lines that sounds good when you say them aloud. If you’re using rhymes, make them consistent. Use an online rhyming site to help you.

When you’ve finished, you can add music if you haven’t already done it. If you don’t play an instrument, you can create the melody with you voice. Or, you can find someone who can add the music. That’s what I’ve doing for the past few years. I am very fortunate to have found several different musicians who like my lyrics and have added music to them.

I’ll share an example of lyrics I wrote. What do you think they mean? What feelings do you think they demonstrate?


From the day I was born

They all told me how to be

What to do, where to go

Never disagree


Yeah, I want to want to


I want to want to

Stand up tall

Sit up straight

Don’t talk back

Definitely don’t be late


I want to want to

I want to want to

Yeah, I want to want to


I want to want to

Shine my shoes

Wear a tie

Cut my hair

Don’t ask why


‘Cause I want to want to

I want to want to

Yeah, I want to want to




I want to want to

Get up early

Work for the Man

Hold my tongue

Make a plan


In the end I’ll do my best

And try to make them see

That I could do just what they said

But I wouldn’t be me

No, I wouldn’t be me

Yeah, it wouldn’t be me


‘Cause I want to want to

Yeah, I want to want to

Yeah, I want to want to

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